Republicans favored to win back Senate: reports

 January 22, 2024

Republicans are well-positioned to take back the Senate in 2024, creating a potential miracle scenario in which Donald Trump returns to power with Congress in his pocket.

Democrats are playing defense in a number of red states, giving Republicans hope of flipping the upper chamber.

To win back the Senate, Republicans have to flip just two seats - a goal that is well within reach with Trump-y states like Montana, Ohio, and West Virginia up for grabs.

Republicans eye Senate comeback

There are some caveats: while Montana looks winnable, Senate Republicans fear that Matt Rosendale (Mt.) will undermine their chosen candidate, Tim Sheehy.

While popular with the Trump base, Rosendale lost to incumbent Jon Tester, a Democrat, in 2018. He hasn't yet said whether he will run this time.

“People across Montana still overwhelmingly would rather have someone who is an independent voice for them and not answering to Mitch McConnell," Rosendale told Politico.

Republicans' odds look better in West Virginia, a state Trump won by 39 points in 2020. It was a reality check for Democrats when senator Joe Manchin (D-Wv.), announced his retirement last year, something Trump immediately took credit for.

Republican Senate leaders like Steve Daines (Mt.), chair of the Senate GOP's campaign arm, are cautiously optimistic but they're not being complacent.

"It's the best map we’ve had in 10 years; I’d rather be us than them. But you can’t fall in love with the map,” Daines said. "Incumbent senators are tough to beat.”

Senate rallies behind Trump

The race for the House looks promising for Republicans, also, with several Democrats leaving behind competitive seats to seek higher office.

And Senate Republicans - never Trump's biggest supporters - have been lining up behind Trump as clouds gather over Biden's White House and re-election campaign.

Biden has been plagued by poor approval ratings, a lousy economy and widespread voter concern about his age.

“Both look really good,” Sen. John Thune (R-Sd)., the second-highest ranking Senate Republican, said about the White House and Senate. “People are over it with [President Biden], and I just think that whoever we nominate is going to be well-positioned to win the presidency, and I think that bodes well for the Senate.”

Of course, if anyone manages to screw it all up, it'll be the Republican party.

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